Thursday, October 13, 2016

Greek Chicken Rice Bowls


Time sure flies when you're having fun...living life...all of the above! I didn't realize it had been a minute since I last wrote a post. [insert embarrassed emoji] Life has been crazy and if you've followed my blog long enough, you will know that is a common theme in my life. Just busy working, living life, dating, etc. You know the usual. Somehow, I still manage to make delicious creations like this Greek Chicken Rice Bowl I'm about to share with you. So easy and so delish you'll have it on your rotating schedule of easy meals to make. The best part of these recipes is that they are so versatile. Can't eat dairy? No problem! Can't eat gluten? No problem! Not a lot of time? No problem! You could even make this low carb if necessary. But who am I kidding? Carbs are LIFE.

I got the idea for these Greek rice bowls when I lived in Sacramento. One of my coworkers introduced me to this place called PitaQ. It's basically the Chipotle for Greek/Mediterranean food. It was love at first bite. I think I went there 3 times in a week once, I loved it so much. When I get hooked on something, I freaking commit to that ish. This place was no exception. There's a menu with a bunch of options and then you build your [pita/salad/bowl/plate]. It wasn't until I came back to Phoenix that I realized I needed PitaQ back in my life. These rice bowls were the closest thing I could come up with to copy it. So hopefully you love these bowls as much as I do.

I'm going to make my intro short and sweet because let's be real, we're all here for the food. So let's get cooking!

Greek Chicken Rice Bowls

Prep Time: 30-45 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 4 bowls
Serving Size: 1 bowl

Ingredients:
  • 4 chicken thighs or breasts 
  • 1 cup rice
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 4 Persian cucumbers
  • 4 cups lettuce or leafy greens of choice
  • 1/2 cup Greek Vinaigrette Dressing (chicken marinade)
  • 1/2 cup Dairy Free Tzatziki 
Optional Ingredients:
  • Feta cheese
  • Kalamata olives
  • Red onion
Individual rice bowl ingredients:
  • 1 chicken thigh cut into bite size pieces
  • 1/2 - 1 cup of rice (or no rice for low carb options)
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 Persian cucumber, cut into coin sized pieces
  • 1 cup of lettuce
  • 2-4 tbsp. dairy free tzatziki
  • 1 tbsp. Greek vinaigrette dressing (optional for extra zest) 
  • Optional ingredients listed above
Method:
  1. Chicken Prep - place the chicken and 1/2 cup of vinaigrette in a zip lock bag in the fridge for 30 minutes or more to marinade.
  2. Rice - you will want to cook the rice to specifications on packaging. Or you can bring 2 cups of chicken stock to a boil, add the rice, cover and cook for 15 minutes on low. Once 15 minutes is up, remove from heat and keep covered for another 10 minutes. You will have the most fluffy and perfect rice there ever was. Welllllll...if you are using white rice. I can't guarantee how brown rice will turn out since I don't eat it...much.
  3. Veggie Prep - wash tomatoes, cucumbers and greens and then pat to dry. Then cut the veggies into bite size pieces. I typically like to halve the tomatoes and slice the cucumbers into coin size pieces with the skin on or peel them. If I'm feeling frugal I will buy a head of lettuce and then prep it or if I'm lazy I will buy a package of pre-washed lettuce. Sometimes laziness wins... -_-
  4. If you don't have the vinaigrette and/or tzatziki prepped already, now would be a good time. Click on the links for ingredients and instructions. Trust me, you want to the try them out because they are DELISH. #shamlessplug
  5. Cooking Chicken - Heat up your grill or in my case, the good ol' George Foreman. Grill chicken until no longer pink in center or 165 degrees if you really want to be specific. Don't have a grill or a George Foreman? You can pan fry the chicken. Typically 10 minutes per side or until a golden brown crust forms.
  6. Prepping the Bowls - Here's where you can get creative and make your rice bowls purdy. Combine the following: chicken, rice, tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers, tzatziki, more Greek dressing and the optional ingredients listed.
  7. Brace yourself for a mouf party. 

Let me know what you think of these Greek chicken rice bowls. Tag me on social media @thehungrylatina on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest, basically all of the social media platforms! Until next time my friends!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Dairy Free Tzatziki


I LOVE Tzatziki. When I eat Greek or Mediterranean food, I drown my food in that creamy, yummy sauce. I like food as a side to my tzatziki. Anyone else like that? The only downside to tzatziki for me is that it's usually made with dairy products. Dairy and I have NOT been getting along lately. I started thinking about ways to make this sauce myself so that I could eat as much as I wanted without getting sick. After some testing in Kitchen de Timo, I finally came up with the perfect recipe for dairy free tzatziki that doesn't compromise flavor! It's even vegan for those of you who live that lifestyle. The best part of this recipe? It's SO easy to make! You dump all of the ingredients in a food processor and voila, you have instant tzatziki! My type of recipe. 
 I really enjoy flavorful food that is easy to make. Life has been crazy and I need to be able to make quick, yet delicious recipes and this was an easy thing to make and add to my Greek chicken rice bowls. That is an upcoming post, so be on the lookout for it!

Ready to get cooking? Let's goooooo!

Dairy Free Tzatziki

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Yield: 2 cups
Serving Size: liberal, but 2-4 tbsps.

Ingredients:
  • 2 Persian cucumbers (seeds removed and chopped into large chunks)
  • 1 cup dairy free unflavored yogurt (I used Silk yogurt)*
  • 1/4 cup fresh dill
  • 2-3 garlic cloves (depends on how garlicky you want it)
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Salt & pepper to taste (I use 1/4 tsp of salt & pepper)
Method:
  1. First things first, make sure veggies are properly washed and cleaned. I'm talking about the cukes, lemon and dill.
  2. You can peel the cucumbers if you want. I left the skin on because I'm lazy. Cut the cucumbers in half and spoon out the seeds. If you don't, you will have watery tzatziki. That's not my style so do what makes you happy. Once the innards have been scooped out, cut into chunks so they can fit in the food processor.
  3. For the dill - I will pick off the leaves and put them in a measuring cup to get the amount I need. You can keep the stick part of it, but it's not my preference.
  4. In a food processor, put the chopped cucumbers, yogurt, dill, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  5. Blend until all ingredients are semi smooth. 
  6. Do a taste test. See if you need more salt, pepper, etc. 
  7. Proceed to cover food in sauce. 

Notes:
  • If you can handle dairy, you can use plain yogurt or Greek yogurt in place of dairy free yogurt. I chose to make it this way because dairy does not agree with me most days. Greek yogurt will give you thicker texture than regular yogurt.
  • If you don't have a food processor, you can easily make this in a blender.
Let me know what you think! I'll be sharing my Greek Chicken Rice Bowls shortly which I put this sauce on. Tag me @thehungrylatina or use the hashtag #thehungrylatina on social media when you make this. I love to see the food porn pictures!